Are you in hospitality and looking for work? Between researching companies, filling out applications and attending interviews, there’s not much time left to actually work! Many professional chefs utilise the services of a chef recruitment agency to help them do the leg work and source new jobs. But what is a reputable agency looking for in potential staff?
Here are our top tips for anyone wanting to be placed on the books of a top agency:
A variety of experience
A great chef is constantly growing, learning and improving their techniques. Whilst you may have a certain style, it’s important to have a variety of experiences and opportunities that have helped you develop your skills. Try working at every station to ensure you understand all aspects of cooking and a running kitchen. Work in new restaurants and discover different cuisines and cultures, as this will encourage you to try new things and be more open minded. A variety of experience will prepare you to work in many different situations and will ensure a chef recruitment agency can place you into a variety of diverse venues with ease.
Being reliable and dependable is a sought-after trait within the hospitality industry. An agency needs to be sure that you will turn up to interviews and jobs, on time and consistently, as it is not only a reflection on you, it is also a direct reflection on them. A good reputation is important as it will strengthen the relationship you have with your agency as well as lead to potential jobs in the future.
One important quality that all chefs should have is flexibility. You need to be flexible enough to be able to be up at 6am for a breakfast shift, or work late into the night. A chef agencies’ favorite chef are those that are happy working fish section in a 1-hat restaurant but can also smash out a 100 Parma’s at the local pub on parma night. As kitchens are very fast paced, things can change quickly and you must be flexible enough to adapt from working the grill, managing larder or even washing dishes, to ensure the kitchen is running smoothly and on time.
The old saying ‘first impressions count’ is particularly true with an agency – especially if you are new to them. A reputable recruiter is looking for professional staff who are not only qualified but who will represent the agency in a suitable and polished manner. Always ensure you are well groomed and neat as you will be working with food – good hygiene is important, and clean ironed clothes will signal your professionalism.
Everyone wants to work in a happy team. A chef recruitment agency is not only looking for professional skills and abilities, but also if you will work well with others. If you have a great attitude and a friendly personality then you will most likely be requested again for other jobs with a particular client. Smile!